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Experience the rugged beauty of remote Milford Sound from Wanaka, all in half-a-day. With a choice of morning or afternoon flight departures, fly over lush national parks, epic glaciers, and alpine lakes, before touching down in the Sound. Enjoy a scenic cruise, keeping an eye out for some of the local inhabitants including seals, penguins, and dolphins, before returning to Wanaka by plane.
The snow-capped mountains, lush forests, and waterfalls of the Mount Aspiring National Park lie along the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island. This action-packed tour lets you explore the park by plane, boat, and on foot. Soar overhead on a scenic flight, hike along the banks of the Siberia River, then hop aboard for a thrilling jet boat ride along the Wilkin River.
Sail around the serene Lake Wanaka on this late-afternoon ‘happy hour’ cruise. With a complimentary beer or wine in hand, cruise around the southern end of Lake Wanaka, the majestic Southern Alps in the distance. Sail around Waterfall Creek, Ruby Island and Stevensons Peninsula, and even see the famous ‘Lone Tree’ – a famous willow growing out of the lake.
A lot of the South Island’s natural hideaways are tough to get to, and that’s definitely the case with Mou Waho Island. This half-day cruise makes it easy; sail from Wanaka Marina to this isolated island in the middle of Lake Wanaka. Walk to the island’s very own lake, the Arethusa Pool, and take panoramic photos of the lake and the nearby Southern Alps, or take a dip at the beach near the island’s only jetty.
See some of New Zealand’s most stunning alpine scenery and learn the ropes of mountaineering on this overnight climbing excursion from Wanaka to Aoraki/Mount Cook. All transport, equipment, accommodation, and guidance is provided, ensuring a stress-free and safe adventure for beginners and experienced climbers alike. With astounding views and heady heights, experience some of New Zealand’s finest alpine terrain.
Saddle up for a horseback ride through the wild landscapes of the Cardrona Valley. Trace the path of the 19th-century gold rush, climb the mountains for a thrilling view over Wanaka Lake, and trot or gallop through the valley plains. Rides can be tailored for all levels, from complete beginners to experienced riders.
Saddle up and explore New Zealand’s rugged wilderness on this 3.5-hour Cardrona High Country pub trail horse-riding trek. Head on horseback into the New Zealand countryside with your guide. Discover points of historical interest along the winding mountain trails, and gain insight into the 19th-century gold rush that brought wealth to the area. Pass through a working cattle farm, traverse choppy rivers and enjoy panoramic views over the rugged scenery. Stop at the historic Cardrona Hotel for a complimentary drink, then return to base along the mighty Cardrona River.
Adventurous travelers will love this waterfall climb, with hidden pools, towering waterfalls, swimming spots, and mountain views. Climb steel ladders and cross high, narrow bridges. Enjoy a picnic lunch beside beautiful falls. While no experience is required and full safety briefings are given, this trip is best suited to active travelers who are sure-footed and unafraid of heights.
Discover the idyllic landscapes of the Mount Aspiring National Park, where filming for the Lord of the Rings took place, on this action-packed half-day tour from Wanaka. Zip along the Matukituki River on a jet boat, admire spectacular views of Lake Wanaka and Mount Aspiring, then hike past forests and waterfalls to see the Avalanche Glacier.
Central Otago is one of New Zealand’s most popular wine regions, producing well-respected reds and whites in alpine vineyards. On this afternoon tour, visit four of boutique wineries in the region and taste some of their award-winning offerings. Learn the secrets behind these wines from the winemakers themselves, and stop at one winery for a gourmet food and wine matching – tasting dishes of local produce matched with wines from the vineyard.
Wanaka is surrounded by rolling alpine farmland, but most of it is privately owned and inaccessible. This half-day tour opens the gate to one of those farms, the massive West Wanaka Station. Explore the Otago back-country in a private four wheel drive vehicle, stopping for astonishing photo opportunities against the backdrop of Lake Wanaka, the Southern Alps and Mount Aspiring National Park.
Inject some thrills into your standard sightseeing adventure and whip through the Southland forests at high speed on this thrilling jet boating experience. Race around Lake Wanaka and down the winding Clutha River, through rapids and tunnels, tight channels and tighter corners, on this compact and comprehensive journey that’ll get you back to shore in time for your afternoon or evening plans. Travel the river at rocketing speeds of around 50mph and enjoy remarkable stunts like the 180-degree Hamilton Spin!
The pōwhiri, or welcome, is an important ritual in New Zealand’s Indigenous Māori culture, inviting visitors as they arrive on their whenua (land). Experience a full pōwhiri, including the wero (challenge) and mihi whakatau (welcome speech), first-hand with this unique cultural experience. Connect with local Māori traditions in a way that you simply can’t through guidebooks and museums; learn more about the local iwi (tribe) and their responsibilities as kaitiaki, or custodians of the land.
Hidden away behind a peninsula, Stevensons Island is one of the harder islands to get to on Lake Wanaka. On this half-day trip, catch a luxury ferry from Wanaka and sail out to the island past local mountains and lush countryside. Upon disembarking, hike to the island’s summit and take in grand views of the peninsula, the lake and the Southern Alps
Try your hand at mind-bending games and puzzles at Puzzling World in Wanaka. This prepaid admission ticket lets you plan your vacation in advance and have guaranteed admission to this popular attraction. Try out the world's first 3D Great Maze, visit the illusion rooms, and test your problem-solving skills.
Kayaking on serene Lake Wanaka, with its clear waters and beautiful coastline, is a great introduction to kayaking. Beginners and those with more experience will enjoy a calm half-day tour approximately 5.5 miles (9 kms) around the lake. Take in the views while experiencing the unspoiled nature that New Zealand is famous more, but without breaking too much of a sweat.
The Twin Falls are two winding waterfalls located in the picturesque Mt Aspiring National Park, a short drive from Wanaka. Most visitors just see them from the road, but you can get up close to them on this half-day climb that’s suitable for beginners and experts alike. See the National Park from a new perspective and take a dip in hidden pools you find during the climb.
Central Otago is the world’s southernmost wine-making region, known for its pinot noirs and stunning high-altitude wineries. On this day long tour around this distinctive wine region, taste a wide range of wines – including pinot noirs and chardonnays – at up to six of the region’s boutique vineyards.
On this half day tour, experience two unique sides of the Wanaka area: the wine made from grapes grown in the whenua (land), and the culture of the tangata whenua themselves – the indigenous Māori who live on the land. Visit a range of local wineries, sampling the region’s popular pinot noir wines alongside many others. Receive the manaaki (hospitality) of the local Māori community and experience a stirring live haka.
After a catamaran cruise across Lake Wanaka to Mou Waho Island—which sits in the middle of the lake—spot rare native birds that are extinct on mainland New Zealand. Thanks to successful conservation efforts, the island is a rare haven for birdlife. Enjoy a guided hike with an expert guide to a lake at the top of the island, an experience that’s rated one of the best must-do activities in Wanaka.
For travelers short on time in Wanaka, this one-hour cruise and walk to Ruby Island is an ideal way to experience the lake and mountains. Glide across Lake Wanaka to Ruby Island in comfort on a luxury catamaran. There, enjoy an easy walk to lookout points that are great places to take pictures from. Families and senior travelers will enjoy this tour, as it’s suitable for all levels of mobility.
Enjoy high-octane thrills in the New Zealand wilderness on this 2-hour Cardrona Valley quad bike experience from Wanaka. Following a comprehensive safety briefing, pull on your helmet and hop onto your 350cc quad bike. Master the controls in safety, then spin off into the mountains of the mighty Cardrona Valley with your guide. Navigate winding dirt tracks through rolling alpine farmland where Merino sheep and cattle graze. Bounce and roll over the rugged terrain, and enjoy panoramic views over the wilds of New Zealand’s South Island.
Get far away from the crowds on this 4x4 day trip from Wanaka. Start with a boat ride across Lake Wanaka, then get exclusive access to the Mount Burke Station. Hop aboard the 4x4 vehicle there and drive up into the mountains. Your guide will tell you stories from Otago’s pioneer history and the gold rush era. Enjoy a delicious picnic with spectacular lake and mountain views.
A full day of adventure and adrenaline, join in New Zealand’s only combined jet boat, wilderness walk, and pack-raft experience. Set on the mighty Matukituki River, just a short drive from Wanaka, you’ll jet up-river, enjoy a beachside lunch at the base of a glacier, and learn the basics of paddling before putting your new skills to use on your own lightweight, stable, two-person raft.